With Springtime Comes Allergies: How to Treat Your Pets
How to Humanely Trap and Bring a Dog to Safety
If Your Dog Freaks Out When you Leave Home, You May Want to Read This Nipping Separation Anxiety and Your Dog in the Bud
With Springtime Comes Allergies: How to Treat Your Pets
Springtime means lots of great things. The weather is warmer. People step outside more often for outdoor activities. Then there’s allergies. Humans aren’t the only ones who suffer. Our pets can be susceptible too, making this great season not so great for our dogs and cats.
Many pet parents are not aware that their pets may be miserable due to springtime allergies, according to the article “If Your Dog is Itchy or Your Cat is Wheezy, You Need to Read This,” by Dr. Karen Becker at HealthyPets.Mercola.com.
The article points to two categories of pet allergies: food and environmental. There are some exceptions, but pets who get itchy in the spring, summer and fall most likely have environmental allergies. Pets whose symptoms are throughout the year are reacting to a “more constant in her environment, or to something in her diet,” the article said.
Watch for these signs:
- Dog and cat allergies typically are seen by “skin irritation or inflammation – a condition called allergic dermatitis,” the article said, whereby the pet’s skin becomes very itchy.
- Allergies can manifest with ear problems, more so in dogs than cats. Problems include scratching and shaking the head. With an infection you typically get odor and ear discharge.
- Pets who are susceptible to seasonal allergies “also develop sensitivity to other allergens inhaled through the nose and mouth,” the article said.
- Puffy red eyes, red chin, red paws.
Seasonal allergies can be remedied with foot soaks and baths with grain free shampoo. Try to keep your pet’s bedding clean, and vacuum and clean floors with non-toxic cleaners where your pet spends most of his/her time, the article said. Consider an anti-inflammatory diet or supplements. Contact your veterinarian first to get your pet on a regimen to feel better during the spring.
Do you know about humane dog trapping? Lost or stray dogs may be difficult to trap. In order to catch them humanely and bring them to safety, you often have to implement a tried-and-true method that many animal rescuers have been doing for years.
It’s easier to catch “well-adusted, confident dogs” who go missing, according to “Humane Capture of Skittish Dogs,” an article found at The Retrievers, a Minnesota-based organization offering lost dog support services.
Shy dogs and dogs never socialized from puppyhood in addition to “Dogs raised in puppy mills and hoarding situations are the most difficult to recover,” the article said. “They will bolt in panic when startled, or escape at the first opportunity when faced with a stressful situation. They may run for several miles before slowing down. And then, they will avoid human contact, running away from anyone who tries to approach.”
This can be very dangerous. Even dogs who come from wonderful families, dogs with great socialization may go into “survival mode” when on the streets for a long time. Those dogs may even run away from their own family as they see humans as threats, the article said.
To bring them to safety, it is often necessary to use a live trap, large enough to capture the animal. The Retrievers suggest a trap larger than a typical crate. Generally, traps are “triggered when the dog is lured far enough into the trap to step on a pressure plate, releasing a mechanism that causes the door to slam shut.”
Oftentimes, food is placed inside a trap to lure the dog in addition to being monitored either by live people or with a special camera.
Those who help are diligent in capturing stray dogs and always put the pet’s welfare first to bring the dog to safety.
Your dog is loving, sweet, cuddly and amazing. However, you’ve noticed that your dog’s personality does a 180 when you leave home. “Dogs with separation anxiety exhibit distress and behavior problems when they’re left alone,” according to the article, “Does Your Dog Freak Out When You Leave?” at The Humane Society of the United States website.
The article said that some of the common ways that dogs exhibit separation anxiety include:
- Digging and scratching at windows and doors
- Destructive chewing
- Urinating and defecating
- Barking, howling and whining
The reasons for separation anxiety are not necessarily known, but “your dog’s behaviors are part of a panic response,” the article said. Your dog wants you home. Triggers can include:
- Dogs left alone when their human is typically home 24/7
- Being alone for the first time
- A traumatic event such as coming from a shelter
- Loss of family member or pet or other routine change
You can try to remedy the situation with some simple things. When you arrive home, don’t make a big deal out of the situation and do the same when you leave the house. Leave something familiar with the dog such as an old sock or shirt that smells like you. You can even try an over-the-counter calming product, but talk to your veterinarian first.
For more severe situations, make sure to create a “safe place,” the article said. This will “limit your dog’s ability to be destructive while you’re away.” The place should not be too small and have a window so he or she is not totally isolated. Leave toys and a dirty sock or shirt.
If the situation becomes intolerable and you need help, make sure to contact a local professional animal behavior specialist. Remember, do not punish or crate your dog. It could make the situation worse.